20 Stunning Small Garden Ideas That Make a Great Impression

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Small gardens have the potential to charm and delight.The limited space allows you to focus on the features you most admire and create an outdoor space with real personality and style. Make a significant impact with clever planning, and you can transform the most compact outdoor space into something exceptional that reflects you.

1. Oasis

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Small-space gardens and courtyards can be improved by adding artificial grass, which reduces maintenance time and keeps your yard looking great throughout the year.

The perfect green retreat for a small courtyard garden can be created with an artificial lawn surrounded by planters and a green wall.

Retro white soft furnishings and a bespoke wooden console & storage/seating bench fill the rest of the space. Add romantic sparkle with overhead festoon lighting.

2. Green Cover

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When your door opens up to not such a pleasant view as a garage wall or an unattractive boundary wall, give it a green cover. Create a pretty green border of small trees and shrubs, tall and low perennials.

Choose plants of different heights that flower at various times of year, and throw in a few evergreens, too, for winter interest.

Over time, the depth and interest created in your garden will remove the focus from what’s behind.

3. Green Wall

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@The Garden Builders

If you can’t have your garden on the ground, have it on your walls!

Liven up a small outdoor space with a glorious mix of leaves, different shapes, textures, and sizes, resulting in a lush green wall.

This is a trend in landscape design used as a way to elevate plants from ground level to eye level and beyond. They also camouflage walls, act as art, and generate a peaceful feel.

4. Large Plant Pots

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@Outside In

Transform a tiny garden by adding drama, height, and style! Having a small garden doesn’t mean you have to scale down with everything.

Going large with plant pots can also introduce much-needed height to a small space, drawing the eye up and allowing for different layers of planting.

For a visually pleasing arrangement, group pots and mix heights and shapes.

5. Sunken Garden

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Why not structure your small garden layout ideas into sections, by creating a private, sunken seating space bordered by decorative screens and greenery?

Sunken gardens can be designed to fit in with all kinds of garden sizes and shapes, as well as budgets.

Have the pleasure of a slightly secluded refuge with a different angle to view plants. Surround your sunken seating area with gorgeous borders.

A sunken garden will add intrigue and intimacy to any plot.

6. Raised Flower Beds

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If your townhouse yard has hard flooring, well, this is the option for you to frame your backyard and elevate your landscape gorgeously.

Flower beds create a sense of enclosure in a landscape, providing a feeling of safety and separation from the surrounding environment.

Raised flower beds can be created to be temporary or permanent, and they are considered low-maintenance gardening—plant taller plants in the back and shorter ones in the front to create depth and interest.

Perennial flowers paired with ornamental grasses are particularly stunning when used in this way.

7. Water Feature

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Garden water features are one of the best ways to create a tranquil atmosphere in your garden. Cascading water produces a relaxing sound, adding to the relaxed feel, so include a water feature.

A water feature is an ideal focal point in the garden and can suit gardens and patios of all shapes, sizes and styles.

Subtle lighting from below can create a lovely ambiance for those late summer evenings.

8. Multi-leveled

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Create a space for every need with a tiered design that will distinctively divide the different zones. Changes in level will create a visually more interesting garden, letting you enjoy the view from various levels.

Even small decks can have more than one level. You don’t have to have profound differences in height. Embrace subtle rises, resulting in a layout that flows easily.

The upper level provides a beautiful entrance to the house’s back door, while the lower level offers a cozy sitting area.

9. Slate Paving

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Slate paving can define any part of your garden, large or small. Non-slippery, durable and effortlessly modern, this versatile stone brings instant appeal to outside spaces.

Segregate a seating area with reclaimed slate paving and a lush planting palette to walk through.

Create a good balance of the space and plant low-maintenance ornamental plants and culinary varieties.⁠

10. Inviting Path

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Paths serve both practical and aesthetic functions in landscaping, so give them character and make them inviting—mix materials for your pathway, like stone and slate gravel, for extra texture.

Mix perennial plants with edible plants to create more interest in your plants and enjoy the best of both.

If your soil is unsuitable for blooming plants, plant some in flower baskets to add color and dress up your fence.

Placing a garden arch is an excellent way to make your pathway charming.

11. Mirrors

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Garden mirrors are beautiful accessories that have the power to transform a space, whether large or small.

Create a new dimension to your garden by increasing the sense of space.

Styling three wall-mounted mirrors in a row will add extra dimension and significantly brighten up your space.

Enhance a brick wall or fence with a decorative mirror, bringing a touch of charm. Place a mirror to generate and reflect light, infusing a whimsical element.

A compact garden can appear doubly spacious, adding intrigue and light wherever the mirror is positioned.

12. Veggie Patch

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Switch your garden foliage to a vegetable garden and enjoy a valuable and pleasant new hobby. You’ll get satisfaction from growing, eating, and harvesting the edibles you love!

Start with choosing the right spot. Most edibles, including vegetables and herbs, need full sun to thrive.

Raised garden beds are a good option, and they are easier to work with because they have good drainage, you control the soil quality, and the working area is easy to keep neat and weed-free.

13. Sanctuary

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@pixie.cottage

Are you longing for a relaxing, intimate space where we can seek retreat?

Get inspired by a meadow garden planting intended to create native plant colonies that closely resemble those found in nature.

They are beneficial to wildlife and require fewer resources to maintain than a traditional garden or lawn.

Plant many wildlife-friendly plants to bring in the bees, birds and butterflies.

Create a gently meandering pathway for strolling that leads to comfortable seating for relaxing and enjoying the buzzing and chirping sounds.

14. Modern Cottage

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@the_modern_cottage_garden

The Modern Cottage Garden is a style that mixes two styles of planting: the traditional cottage garden and the new perennial garden. Create an informal design and charmingly eclectic mix of plants.

It’s all about soft lines, heirloom varieties, and unstructured flower beds.

This informal garden style is usually achieved by annuals and flowering bulbs that provide ground-level sweeps of color and by perennials that add spontaneous background highlights.

15. Garden Shed

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@frenchcottageinspiredliving

Take over your garden shed area and create a little retreat. Turn your backyard shed area into a comfortable workplace and a pleasant destination to relax and even entertain.

Borrow inspiration from the main house design and make it feel like an extension of your home, for example, by keeping the same color scheme.

Layer gravel for easy maintenance and set up a comfortable seating area surrounded by big planters.

16. Cozy Garden

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Create a charming garden in a small space with a more intimate feel. A clever design can make even a smaller space feel special and give it purpose.

Border your garden with various flowers, like roses, lavender, delphinium, and other colorful options, close together to replicate a garden you’d find in the countryside.

One of the most desired pieces of outdoor furniture is a garden bench.

A bench surrounded by abundant flowers can become the focal point of your landscaping design. What better way to sit and take in all the beauty around you?

17. Contemporary

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@belderboslandscapes

Open up extra living space with an excellent flowing design to accommodate your lifestyle and reflect your personality.

This contemporary garden flows out elegantly from the house with a streamlined, modern and minimal landscape.

The design provides a space for both entertainment and relaxation. The advantages of having glass doors are that they let in plenty of light, and when opened, they automatically create a seamless feel. During winter, they offer a beautiful view.

18. Seasonal

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@rachelrsimon

Each changing season brings a new opportunity to infuse life, color, and creativity into these spaces; besides selecting flowers to ensure that your garden flourishes throughout the seasons, make easy seasonal changes to your garden décor.

Change your seating color scheme with throw pillows or a blanket. Place a seasonal bouquet on your coffee table and change your potted plants with seasonal blooms.

Use what the season offers and the color palettes it brings with it. If fall is on the way, why not use pumpkins?

19. Balcony Garden

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@17m2garden

Don’t let the concrete overtake and brighten your balcony with many potted plants.

Make your balcony feel like a garden pathway and group potted plants in a zig-zag layout so there is enough space to walk through.

Railing planters are a beautiful way to dress up any balcony, especially with seasonal blooms overflowing with color.

20. Archway

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@theenglishgardener

Garden arches can also be used in small, narrow garden spaces. Transition between two areas and add height to a narrow side garden.

Use an arch as a vertical structure to give visual interest to your raised bed design and also provide a structural element to define your walkway and offer support for climbing plants.

Many fruiting plants have a vining nature, including pole beans, cucumbers, and vining tomatoes, so if you have a vegetable garden, you can easily use an arch to support them.

21. Cottage Style

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@thedistinctivegardener

A terraced house garden can have a design that flows out from the house, leading to a series of “garden rooms” bordered by lush garden beds.

A meandering walkway helps to break the narrow feel and create a flow to distract from the extensive boundary lines.

For a sense of privacy and a suitable place to relax or entertain, try creating a few seating areas in the garden.

Use focal points to draw the eye around the space, like water features, art, or planters—these points of interest naturally link various garden areas together or define the spaces’ uniqueness.

22. Pot Up

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@chipsgardens

Various shapes, sizes, and materials contain plants ranging from large ornamental trees and shrubs to green foliage. Foliage plants work really well for shady locations.

Line the deck area on both sides with pots and use foliage that will add a contrasting note to the decking with greenery, creating the illusion of space and making the garden appear rather grand.